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Subject: Cardtable Game #2 - The Revenge of Vulca rss

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Joe Stude
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The way I traditionally play games involving armies or decks is that I choose a deck and stick with it for quite a while trying to learn all its intracacies. Often influenced by this is rhetoric regarding various decks and their potencies. Lately, I've been reading that a lot of people are having a really hard time succeeding with Vulca, so naturally that's become my deck of choice as I try to get proficient and/or win consistently with it. This session report is for a game I just finished with my buddy Derek a little bit ago, after our last Vulca/Hoax game where he won as entailed in the session report I posted previous to this. After getting swept out, I was eager for revenge.

Without further ado, the game!

I won the coin flip and started the game with Volca, declaring 5 fire. I wanted to start quickly in case he got a lousy starting draw. No such luck here - D followed up with Wogarathoras the Gloomy for 5 fire back in my face. After I played Heroine of the Great Plains (which I was forced to do or retreat - didn't like blowing the 5 earth in a fire battle so early) and Fireblast for a total of 8 fire, D was forced to retreat. YES, nice way to start.

Vulca 1-0.

D started off the next fight with Vetraskadas the Skeptic for 3 fire. I responded with Ember + Elemental Enchantment for 6f back his way. With the power text restriction and the high fire attack I felt pretty confident, but after a minute of thinking D followed up with Enthrall Opposition to void all my power text. Then followed Genathones the Blind, Battling Boomerang, and Brain Drain. Ugh. Not liking the prospects and seeing he was at 5 cards in his combat, I tossed down "Charm Holy Dragon", discarding Lightning Bolts (3/1 support), Flare (2/2), and Shimmer (3/2). I then retreated, still feeling pretty good with myself for getting rid of Enthrall, plus the retrievable support card and brain drain with D having nothing to show for it but my three sacrificed cards.

Vulca 1-0.

I began the next fight with Ignite, declaring 4 earth. My strategy here to jump into earth, hoping to draw out some of his potent earth cards before switching the element to fire with the mutant I had in-hand. D followed with Henry Highflyer Hawk and the Trebuchet of Fear. No biggie, I responded with a character I didn't note for a small attack in earth (2, probably). D responded with Thirkomedas the Serene with Duplicator of Strength for a total of 5 earth back at me. PERFECT! I responded with Zig-Nur-Don, switching the element to fire, sending 4 fire back D's way, and making the Duplicator support useless. He managed to counter the 4 fire with a character I didn't note and sent the fight back in my direction. Fine, said I, and I responded with Flamebreath, trying to go for the jugular while in my element of choice. D immediately responded with his own mutant, sending 8 earth back in my direction. ARRRGH. Having nothing to respond with, I played "Summon Sorcerer", brought Flamebreath back into my hand, and had to retreat. I retrieved my powerhouse, but wasn't very pleased.

Hoax 1-0.

I opened the next battle with Sear, sending 4 fire D's way. D responded with Ciklarethas the Bitter and Homing Missiles for a total of 4 fire back at me. Still having a lot of power buried in my deck somewhere, I decided to risk a retreat here for the sake of forcing D to lose the two remaining retrievable cards in his deck. I figured with the power I had left I'd be able to quickly make up the dragons.

Hoax 2-0.

I opened the next battle with Blaze, 4 fire to D. D's response: Nirwadas the Traveler with the Ballista of Confusion for 4 fire back at me. Here came what I think, in hindsight, was a mistake. Rather than going big quickly, I decided to go small with Cinder (2 fire) in the spirit of forcing D to discard the ballista and, throwing the volcanic gauntlets down doubled my power to 4 fire. I considered throwing Flamebreath with the Gauntlets for 14 fire, but with D's recent penchant for always having the proper response in hand I figured he'd respond with Inscrutable Armor and trash my gambit. I got 4 fire back at me via Ledinemras the Monk. Oh yeah? Scorch for 6 fire, back at D. D threw down Muster Reinforcements, pulling 5 cards into his hand. Gee, what timing. I couldn't wait to see what he had in store. Out came Sarogakanas the Ancient + Inscrutable Armor. The discard casualties - Flamebreath and Infernal Armor. ARGH. Figures. Against a wall now, I dropped Lavar the Powerful with Fearsome Spirits, sending 5 fire back at D and hoping for a miracle. A win here would give me 3 dragons, putting me back in the lead. No such luck - out came Demegodas the Odd and Tome of Wisdom for 8 fire, which I couldn't touch, even if I'd not lost Flamebreath. Game over, Hoax 4-0.

Another wipeout loss, but one I don't feel too bad about. While D seemed to have a response for every situation in hand at all times, I had a number of really vital cards (Wall of Fire, Pandemonium, and Cast Cataclysm) that never showed up for me. I had a similar situation in the session report I posted before as well, where some of the vital cards either showed up too late to matter or not at all.

As a side note, our final game was our first with decks beside Vulca/Hoax... I chose Terrah while he chose Aqua. We fumbled a bit with some of the new mechanics but I think we played everything well. He used Water of Immortality somewhere along the line, which obviously meant that I was going to deck first. With barely enough cards left to draw I was up 1-0 and felt pretty confident. During the massive battle just before endgame I got two Storm cards into my support area, but since I already had the lead and we both had more than six cards in our combat areas, retreating wasn't an option for D. I began a turn with both Storms in play, moving the score to 2-0. Awesome. It was looking like the final battle would be mine to boot, giving me a wipeout victory, but again D had amazing luck, drawing his second flood card the turn before. I was forced to retreat immediately, without being able to begin another turn, negating my storms, giving him the win, and putting us back at 0-0 while I had 4 cards remaining in hand. Great. I had a 0/7 in-hand, but considering his luck thus far didn't have much confidence. I tried to complicate things with Impenetrable Fog, but once I got the 0/7 out he, of course, had an answer for it and won the whole match for 2 crystals.
 
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Daniel Kearns
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Great report! Nice retreat in the second battle to bury the boomerang and brain drain. You negated some nice hoax cards and kept the score even with the charm.
 
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Joe Stude
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Thanks. Had it not been for him tossing down his own mutant after I'd just switched the fight back to fire, this would have been a completely different game. I'm learning how important it is to have something available to fight off Hoax support cards - never getting Cataclysm left me at the mercy of all but one of his support cards and he won dragons with them nearly every time (despite the fact I counteracted one with Charm).
 
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Joe Gola
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Nice report! Thanks for the read!
 
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